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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

OUR FIRST BUDYONG PRINT ISSUE: A Hardworking Staff's Labor of Love and How It Actually Got Me To Shut Up For At Least An Hour

What do you think? 

Best. Publication. Evar.
I think the Budyong editorial staff never thought the day would come when they'd see me so overwhelmed that I would actually be just sitting at a corner and speechless for at least an hour. 

Akin to seeing Jersey Shore's Snooki Polizzi all sobered down Xanaxed out, albeit without the fake tan and drugs, my uncanny temperament change brought about an awkwardness in the Budyong office that was so thick you could cut right through it with a knife.

No, I wasn't felt up by a creepy old man inside the restroom, our first print issue just arrived today! Saying we were as jubilant as Piolo Pascual in a Chippendales show in Vegas would be a complete understatement.

Budyong, the official student publication of the Bicol University College of Arts and Letters, the newspaper which I'm the editor-in-chief of, is very glad to announce that we are already releasing our first print issue for the Academic Year 2011-2012.

Our wonderful,  kid-friendly Budyong artists
Seeing those stacks of newspapers fresh out of the press and delivered to our office was like witnessing the live birth of your son (Not that I would know. Seeing as I can barely keep my dogs healthy or mentally sound, I would not allow myself to procreate). Watching the guy from the printers carry those newspapers in was simply the most glorious thing a first-time editor could experience.

But it wasn't all my hard work. It was mostly the staff's, if you ask me. I could only imagine what our paper would look like if our layout and graphic artists weren't around to make sure that we wouldn't use green outer glow effects on red fonts. If the writers are the heart and soul of the newspaper, our artists are definitely a slightly overweight college girl's sassy gay best friend who always helps spruce up and glamorize her look.

As I gaze intently at our newspaper, I always think how the students would never see all the sweat, blood, tears and sleepless nights we had to put in in order for us to produce this labor of love. This is why I'm taking this opportunity to beg everyone to PLEASE READ THE PAPER.

It would be a disservice, not only to the staff, but to you as well if you opt not to take time in reading the college publication. You paid for those 18 pages after all. The students paid for restorative and responsible journalism and it is only fitting that they get they're money's worth.

I hope we could see a the newspaper's tangible effect manifest itself soon. Budyong is all for student transformation and nothing would make us happier than seeing our paper change the way students think and act. Never mind the negative response, that will always be part of a journalist's career. We just want to see them think, act and move for a change.

A photo of me in Jollibee Old Albay still intoxicated
with bliss and incapable of coherent langauge.
But I won't linger on audience effect in this blog post, because right now I'm still basking in a profound state of accomplishment and fulfillment. I mean, we're talking about something that took almost four months to create! We had to forgo our academics to some extent just so we could give back to the student body. So seeing all of our efforts in the form of these newspapers is something I will never stop blabbing about.

As this was definitely a cause for celebration, the staff headed to the nearest Jollibee in Old Albay for dinner (Yes, most of us are economically challenged.)

Looking at every staff member at our table, I couldn't help but feel utterly grateful for their contributions to making our newspaper happen. They are very special to me and without them, there would be no Budyong print issue.

This blog post is dedicated to them. And since I've recently found out that I'm a finalist in both the 2011 Philippine Blog Awards Bloggers' Choice and Readers' Choice, I would like to make them a permanent part of my blog as they are also a very important part of who I am. In the first place, I wouldn't have The Culture Shack without these guys. So if ever I get to win something on December 3, I want everyone to know that they're a big part of my victory. Not that I'm expecting to win of course. But it would be hypocritical on my part if I told you that I don't want to win.

This is for everyone who have made our great accomplishments possible. I raise a toast for you!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Why you should vote The Culture Shack as Philippine Blog Awards 2011 Blogger's Choice!

What do you think? 

The Culture Shack is a 2011 Philippine Blog Awards Bloggers' Choice finalist!
Thinking that my Youngblood article would be my last big accomplishment of the year, I received an e-mail today from a friend informing me that The Culture Shack, the blog you're reading right now because you have nothing better to do presumably, was nominated as a finalist in the 2011 Philippine Blog Awards Blogger's Choice.

It is un-effin'believable to be a finalist in a national blogging contest, especially if you're somebody like me who isn't exactly a hundred percent confident in (and conscious of) the value of his personal ideas and writing capabilities. To me, simply being nominated in an event of this magnitude is like Forrest Gump being given a Nobel Prize. So needless to say, I am genuinely and sincerely grateful for this honor.

But of course, it would also be really nice if I won this award. You, yes YOU, can help me reach my dream of bagging this honor. Also, it's so easy, even my grandma could do it! Here's how:

1. Write a blog post about your choice from the list of finalists. You may give an explanation why your choice should be the Bloggers’ Choice for this year.

2. Make sure to include a link to this post in your blog post, and
 make sure to include “rel=nofollow” in the link. We will not count your vote if you fail to comply with these requirements.

For example:
I vote for "The Culture Shack" for this year’s Philippine Blog Awards Bloggers’ Choice.

The link should look like this: <a href=”” rel=”nofollow”>

You can vote for only one blog in the list above, and you can only vote once.
Voting ends 11:59 PM of December 2, 2011. You can start voting now!

Now you may be wondering why you should vote for The Culture Shack. Here is a list of reasons:
  1. The Culture Shack is about everything under the sun. It's not only a potpourri of a wide range of subject matters, it also dares you to look at things from a different perspective and challenges you to adapt a unorthodox mindset.
  2. The Culture Shack is both about embracing life and kicking in the balls (Not necessarily in that order). This blog understands that in order to appreciate life, one must look at both its beautiful and butt-ugly faces. 
  3. The Culture Shack is sheer, unadulterated rawness. When we say that this blog has a point to put across, we mean it. We don't like to compromise the intellectual and social value of the blog posts with empty calisthenics. Style without a means and/or an end is a cheating writer's way to hoodwink people into thinking that they have something to say when they don't. The Culture Shack likes to keep it real, unlike most blogs out there pretending that they have something to say.
  4. The Culture Shack is written by someone like you. No, I don't get to travel to many places. No, I don't rally in front of government agencies or cause traffic on Labor Day. No, I don't know any  famous people personally, except if you consider Pinoy Big Brother Unlimited's Casey Austria (an ex-classmate) a celebrity. I'm just a 21 year-old journalism senior from Bicol University wanting to throw in a piece of my mind into cyberspace. It's amazing what a seemingly boring daily life could contribute to social media. If there's someone who knows this well, it's me. The greatest adventures are sometimes just in front of your vandal-ridden armchair.
  5. The Culture Shack is notabout self-promotion, it's about speaking out. I believe that every single one of us has something to tell, and this is my way of satisfying my need to help other people see from a different lens. 
I'm sincerely hoping that you would help me win this award. Like hot sauce on sinigang, it would really make my day. Please vote for The Culture Shack. Remember, this is not only my blog's victory but yours as well! Thank you very much!

The Culture Shack is a 2011 PBA Blogger's Choice finalist!

I vote for "The Culture Shack" for this year’s Philippine Blog Awards Bloggers’ Choice.
 <a href=”” rel=”nofollow”>